Soon to be for Sale at Qtoo on Etsy.The gang have gone to the Big Splash event in Stewart Park and I am blissfully washing towels, charging my iPad, making coleslaw and thinking about the iconic aspects of roses. It was similar yesterday—and I revelled in not having deadlines, plans or schedules. It was just nice being….reading, and at the end of the day floating…until the Bros came over and I made a nice but pretty informal and quick dinner to entertain them.

I am making these cameos (see to the left) and shooting pictures on my windowsill with a point and shoot and then using the photoshop skills (once in a while this sort of thing is nice to really have chops in)—to create images to post to Etsy for the soon to be Qtoo Shop. There will be jewelry and tattoos, cards, and sticker sets, and of course, tattoos. The more I think about Q designed/ illustrated tattoos (particularly the big ones) I think there is a cool niche that could happen not only as one offs, but for wedding parties, anniversaries, etc. And, the darker the better though seed package art might make some cute tats as well.  Both Alex and Rob are not enthused about this, but it is keeping my mind off of where my head is these days with the travel and changes about to happen.

I must be a bit depressed, I think, from the change in the near future. No more kids full time. You have them, raise them and put them first in all you do from cash spends to time spends— and then, they are gone. I am sounding selfish, I know—but when “THEY” give you the baby to take home from the hospital, “They” do not give you a book on how to nurture and raise this person, what to watch out for, how to behave, how to react, how to plan, how to care. “They” do not give you a roadmap of the key “decision diamonds” (corporate speak, impressed?) on this persons path from zero to eighteen. And as we adults stumbled, and fumbled, our little ones raised themselves with breakfast, lunch and family dinners, with little vacations and time at the lake, with the picking and loving of pets, music, art and books on tape to become the fledglings that are leaving our nest…and with that my fear the bumpy road ahead. Why is it that I hesitate in trusting this person who I trust implicitly? Why is it that  I fear for their personal fumbles? Why is it that I worry about the unknown? What can I do to help my fledgling get out of the nest and point his head into the wind to soar? I worry at this change—and am at the same time puzzling over all the new time I will have to be selfish with. More time for pictures. More time to date my boyfriend husband. More time to get myself together. It could be a wild marvel and opportunity and I should try to focus on that than the fear and trepidation I have for my kids. Number One is flying. Number Two is ready….He just needs to jump…and I need to let him (and applaud!). I need to treasure the time I have with them together in the next few weeks and then try to let go. I think I can do this…. I know they can. Deep breath.

signs of fall

Green Man 12, Q. Cassetti, 2011, pen and ink.The hosta have their huge white trumpets pointing to the sky, fragrant and rich, ready to beckon autumn. We always have them for Alex’s birthday—just on the front end of school starting.It is hard to imagine that summer is on the downside—and that change is in the air—back to school, back to college, finding colleges, finding programs, Thanksgiving and Columbus Day weekends all in eyeshot. I really just want to freeze this time of cool breezes, dramatic clouds on the horizon, the purple/paines grey and pink evenings, and the mesmerizing sleep we all are granted in our lakeside bower. Doesn’t get much better than this.

It is a quieter week on the work front. My client is taking her well deserved holiday so we have a bit of space to finish up some loose ends. I hope I can break through some of the more rigid things and have projects moving again. It would be great.

The freezer jam I made from some of the peaches we picked is half done (home team say yum yum)…and I made another dose last night. Quick and so easy…and all about the fruit. Next step, no sugar and maybe some fresh lemon peel…or peaches and raspberries? Oy. More raspberries concurrent with the Hector National Forest Saturday drop offs for Alex to do Cross Country training….He needs a pick up and delivery…so I can pick in the three hours in between. Divine!

I started a poster for the Library anniversary and surprisingly, I think the vector is too staid for the event, so I am going to draw this one. Needs to be more whimsical and illustrative. A portrait is not the right family/fun message I think they are looking for. I have 2 vector portraits on board too…so I have a bit of everything.`

Summer at hand.

“A Joker and His Wife”. This 18th-century lubok is a copy of a German popular print.A cool, perfect day at the lake. I started late, but within a hour I had several small plants begging for mercy and others looking quite trim and manicured. More tomorrow. The Osage Orange, otherwise known to us as the Monkey Brain Tree, is lethal with its sharp new green thorns ready to scratch and gouge. And the arctic willow, randomly sends out hundreds of long, new wands, making the plant look quite hairy and unelegant. The trumpet vine (which really is manifested more like a tree) was sending vertical shooters into the grass…wild in its prolific desire to grow and reproduce. I brought 2 of the six tree peonies I bought from Song Sparrow up here and have been giving them sun and water and they are delighting in being here. Transplanting is soon. The first tree peony I put in has flourished and I am hoping for three as the blooms are so otherworldly, having three bushes might permit me to pick one for a vase inside. Or at least, that is my hope.

Alex has just gone to his job (dishwasher/busser at the Rongovian Embassy). Kitty and Rob are shuttling. I am back from grocerystoring…and have 4 logs of pizza dough in the fridge to bake off tonight (King Arthur Baking Companion bible recipe). Seems like we might be overrun with friends of Kitty and Alex tomorrow for dock jumping, bonfire making and the like. I think the extra packages of hot dogs and the pizza shells might come in handy tomorrow. Let me check on the drinks and tea situation. My hope is to clip some more tomorrow, and draw a bit. I am fusing Lubok and Bees with some various ideas I want to try out.

It is remarkable not having a graduate school summer this year. The long thread of sunny evenings and open time to “mess about” is so remarkable that I am a bit taken back by the luxury. No deadlines, no late nights and raw nerves from the lack of sleep and some of the idiotic high jinx of our classmates, no shows to hang, no papers to write…just a lovely unbroken summer with Grassroots in the middle and Hampshire at the very end. There is berry picking and music, friends and quiet…something I havent had since 2005. Rob has a week at Sagamore this September that I might tag along on…as my break from reality and of course, there is the hope of a few days at Art Basel Miami in December..But, we will see.

I need to go and check on a few things. I am steeling myself for a dunk in the lake later this p.m. whether I want to or not. A dunk in the lake guarantees wonderful dreams.